Ganga Dussehra or Gangavataran is a major Hindu festival. The auspicious day, observed in honour of Goddess Ganga, is on June 20. The day marks the descent of the sacred Ganga on Earth. Usually on Ganga Dussehra, devotees prefer to visit holy places on the banks of the Ganga like Prayagraj, Garhmukteshwar, Haridwar, Rishikesh and Varanasi to take a holy dip. Ganga Dussehra celebrations are famous in Varanasi and thousands of devotees participate in Ganga Aarti at the iconic Dasaswamedh Ghat. But this year due to the covid-linked guidelines in place, the celebrations are low-key.
Ganga Dussehra date and time:
According to the Hindu calendar 2021, Ganga Dussehra is in the month of Jyeshtha, during the Shukla Paksha or the Full Moon fortnight.
- Ganga Dussehra is on Sunday, June 20
- Dashami tithi begins at 6:45 PM on June 19
- Dashami tithi ends at 4:21 PM on June 20
- Hasta Nakshatra starts at 9:38 PM on June 18
- Hasta Nakshatra ends at 8:29PM on June 19
- Vyatipata Yoga begins at 12.29 AM on June 17
- Vyatipata Yoga ends at 12.26 PM on June 18
Ganga Dussehra Puja Vidhi
Devotees wake up early in the morning and take a bath. Many people like to mix a few drops of the holy water from the Ganga to the tap water for bath. Devotees usually observe fast on Ganga Dussehra. Arghya or offerings to the Sun god or Surya Devta is important on the day. People pray and offer naivedyam to the household deity and Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati on the day. After a short meditation, the puja is concluded by performing Ganga Aarti.
Significance of Ganga Dussehra
A 10-day-long festival, Ganga Dussehra starts a day ahead of Nirjala Ekadashi, another significant day for devotees of Lord Vishnu. Ganga Dussehra marks the decent of Maa Ganga or Goddess Ganga on Earth. According to the scriptures, devotees worship Goddess Ganga on this day for relief from hardships and troubles. Ganga Dussehra is believed to be an auspicious day for Griha Pravesh (starting stay in a new house), buying expensive things like vehicles or starting new businesses.